“Would you have come here anyway?” the Lady Zay Asked.
A cold fear begins to grip you as your investigation progresses. Though you have found much, every clue brings more questions than answers.
The mysterious D’jinn, fires of the desert. The assassinated madman. The appearing arrow. The secret weapons program. The murdered information broker. The empty tomb. The ancient prophecy. Whispers of cults and rage-inducing drugs on the streets. The attractive psychiatrist. The missing caravan. The antediluvian text. The shadowy monk and the enigmatic pirate Hakkosh. Larkin, the spy warning of treasons and secret societies.
All these may form a link in a chain. A chain threatening to wrap around the throat of Za’har Province and maybe the very empire as well. But how do they join together? Or are you simply chasing shadows and images created by your own suspicions?
You are in a meeting with Lady Zay, there to discuss your conclusions.
• You travelled to the site of development for Project Scorpion, near Dalzanagdad where work is progressing on the metal catapults and Greenthistle fire. If completed as expected they will form a formidable battlefield and siege weapons.
• In the Library you have found the Illithine Prophecy along with a first hand account of an ancient Zerrikanian invasion of the El’Harrim and the Quinnese empires.
He rides, even today among the stars;
T’ward his people, now ‘oer destiny bereft;
Far now, but He with every even nears;
Unite the tribes! asunder are now cleft.
Great Stallion! To the mewling weak:
bringer of tears; in Fire and Blood
will conquering Zerrikanian arrows streak
after the flames: a pasture ‘er proud cities stood.
Great Stallion! from Haven doth he ride;
A blackly sun will clearly shine for all;
The King of Kings! To us he will arrive,
And every Khan and every Queen his thrall;
The Bloody fist, a portent of His fate
The grazing world, His thirst of conquest sate!
• These have led you to a tomb of the ancient Khan Atteron (who united the Clans as a Khan of Khans), which you found empty save for an old philosophical text “the Discourse on Salt and Iron”. You left the scroll in the library for translation.
• You attended Count Aelzor Si’Rota’s Ball in honour of his daughter Allegra. There you were contacted by an IA operative – Stirling Larkin. He told you that he suspects a subversive secret society of some sort has been recruiting primarily Zerrikanians. Jaikon (Kris) established an alter identity looking to make contact with the society but to no avail so far.
• A new drug called Mek’hoa has been hitting the streets. It has religious significance to the Zerrikanians and sometimes sends its takers into a bloody rage. Several deaths have allredy been attributed to the substance.
• Teller told you of a mysterious man calling himself Hakkosh. In front of your very eyes he was assassinated by a Shadow-Monk. Though you gave chase he disappeared. He slew Teller with no fewer than 5 daggers, thrown an impossible distance and coated with Black manticore Venom – a substance deadly to the Zanhamani. His apprentice, Mr Hardhill, charged you with avenging his master.
o In year 774 Hakkosh Arrives in freetown in a rented “friendly Ship”
o Buys a stake in a pirate ship and assumes command even though he’s a landsman.
o Teller was agent, he suspected Hakkosh had a partner but he couldn’t find him.
o Intercepts a Lupellan freighter carrying silver secretly and disbands crew (secretly buying arms from Messin City).
o Months later arrives in Lupellus and buys Publicani associated with Cornelius Sulla at discount prices. Weeks later Sulla wins a great victory over his opponents armies led by Saturninus. Hakkosh sells his shares for a fortune.
o Shows up months later in Helena and commissions two magical Ahaks, also a number of magical daggers; and purchases a number of scrolls and magical artefacts.
o Vanishes. Has been spotted on two occasions in Zahariim within the last year.
o Again teller can’t find him.